‘As team captain, I’m very proud’: Cambridgeshire Flyball team captain reflects on Crufts success

PUBLISHED: 12:28 10 March 2020 | UPDATED: 12:28 10 March 2020

The Cambridgeshire Flyball team after their quarter-final at Crufts. Picture: CAMBRIDGESHIRE FLYBALL TEAM

The Cambridgeshire Flyball team after their quarter-final at Crufts. Picture: CAMBRIDGESHIRE FLYBALL TEAM

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It may have been a tough ask, but the Cambridgeshire Flyball team certainly did themselves proud at this year’s Crufts event.

The Cambridgeshire Flyball team. From left: Ian Richens & Hope, Ellen Schofield, Anita Howard & Bishop, Nicole Webster & Layla, Pamela Parish & Bailey, Alan Treadwell-Jones & Marley, Lynnette Treadwell-Jones & Poppy. Picture: SUPPLIEDThe Cambridgeshire Flyball team. From left: Ian Richens & Hope, Ellen Schofield, Anita Howard & Bishop, Nicole Webster & Layla, Pamela Parish & Bailey, Alan Treadwell-Jones & Marley, Lynnette Treadwell-Jones & Poppy. Picture: SUPPLIED

Ellen Schofield's team were knocked out in their flyball quarter-final against Focus at the NEC in Birmingham last week, who then went on to win the tournament.

The local side appeared at the renowned dog racing competition for only the second time since forming in 2007, and captain Schofield could not have asked for more from her team.

'In my mind, the right team won,' she said.

'I never realistically expected us to go any further, just because the other team were faster than us.

'We raced solid and were beaten purely on the other team was faster, which in my mind always a better way to lose.

'As team captain, I'm very proud. I ask them to go out there, do their best and let the dogs showcase themselves.

'We felt we did ourselves proud and that's all that matters.'

Cambridgeshire fielded six dogs for the flyball race, which sees two teams of dogs race against each other through a series of obstacles as they trigger a box releasing a ball before returning to the start line as quickly as possible without dropping it.

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Being only one of 16 teams across the UK to be selected for Crufts, Schofield hopes this experience can help her side prepare for upcoming tournaments, including the UK Flyball Championships in August.

'Crufts next year has a question mark over it; it needs confirmation from the Kennel Club,' Schofield said.

'The hope is that qualifiers will be re-introduced this year and we will be going forward to those.

'We will work more on the environment that the dogs need to be able to cope with and hopefully, we'll be hosting one of those qualifiers in the summer if everything goes to plan.

'We're currently seeded sixth in the UK Flyball League.

'In the UK championships, they take the top eight teams through to a final and our work is cut out now to get ourselves into that top eight.'

Cambridgeshire are next in action at Wood Green Animal Shelter between March 28-29.

For more information on the Cambridgeshire Flyball team or to join, email Ellen Schofield at ellen@cambridgeshire-flyball.org.uk.


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